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2007

Economics

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Labor Unions: A Corporatist Institution In A Competitive World, Michael L. Wachter Jan 2007

Labor Unions: A Corporatist Institution In A Competitive World, Michael L. Wachter

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Union membership, as a percentage of the private sector workforce, has been in decline for 50 years. I argue that the cause of this unrelenting decline is a single, fundamental factor – the change in the United States economy from a corporatist-regulated economy to one based on free competition. Most labor commentators have explained the decline by a confluence of unrelated economic and legal forces. Labor economists typically stress economic explanations, which vary from compositional shifts in the job structure to increased competition both domestically and internationally. On the other hand, labor law commentators naturally focus on labor law explanations, …